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Hammer Handle

Fat deer mean a cold winter.....

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While butchering deer this year, we noticed a lot more fat on the deer than previous years.

My father said "Oh oh, we are in for a cold winter."

Looks like he was right (or the deer were right)??

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Heard the same thing hammer handle, I often post we are 1 bad winter away from ? I think the answer is changes in our season and or bag limits. I did notice a lot of fat on the few deer I saw without hides. Looks pretty chilly till the end of Dec. according to the forecast.

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I hope not! I think its a result of habitat/rain/acorn crop etc. The pair of bucks I skinned were fat free - amazing those guys make it through a rough winter.

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ya, there was some story, maybe in outdoor news or outdoors section of the sunday paper similar to it. Bear hunter butchered his bear and the liver or spleen was large and that was supposed to mean a cold winter upcoming

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On the 2 we butchered first weekend I commented on the lack of fat this year. I would say the least amount in the last 10 years of cutting ourselves. Go figure?

Ferny

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That is strange.

The habitat in our area is the same, and all the deer were fatter than normal. The most fat I have seen on deer in many years.

Other relatives brought deer over to butcher from 80 miles away. Same thing, very fat deer.

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of the 9 deer I took part in butchering, all but one had thick deposits of fat along thier backs. The one that didn't was an older 10 pointer that we took during the height of the rut, so I can see why he didn't have any. Even the yearlings that were taken had large fat deposits on them. Bundle up! It's cold outside!!

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Gonna be a long winter for the deer at the pace we are on now. Lots of fat is only going to go so far. We have a ton of winter left. And the forecast is going to add to the challenge.

Lower harvest this year might be a good thing, IF the winter continues at this current pace.

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Fat deer mean to me that the deer found good food sources. I don't believe they accumulate fat through predicting weather.

They eat all they can, when they can. Now muskrats; they can predict a snowy cold winter; more houses and the larger the worse the winter. Noticed a surge in houses this year as compared to being bank rats. We will see if Larry Schucard,

the disiple of this philosophy is correct this year. Back to fat as I pear up and around my belly to see keyboard, we are in for a he11 of a long cold spell (30-40 years or so)acourding to the body fat philosophy.

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I see this every year. I have a small processing enterprise. Some have it, some not. Those that are sparce are usually the ones that come from strictly pasture land in west river SoDak. I'm of the school of thought that they had a good source of spring/summer food if they are layered. As I said in the "pronghorn in Minn" topic, this winter could take a toll on all wild game. We are gettin pounded with sub zero weather.

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IMO its an indicator of how well they came though the last winter. Same is true for antler growth. If deer were stressed coming out of the last winter it'll take time and nutrients to get their emaciated bodies back into good condition. Only then will they start putting fat on.

Fat is stored energy. Of coarse deep snows make times tough for deer just by making it harder to get around and browse, thus burning fat to do that. There are other factors that stress deer and compound the snows. Getting run from predictors and dogs.

They don't have to catch deer to kill them, just the expended energy to flee can eventually do them in.

Deer coming off an easy winter with less stress is less time they need to just bounce back. Antler growth and putting on fat begins sooner.

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